Air India Express

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Air India Express
Air India Express Logo.svg
Founded May 2004
Commenced operations 29 April 2005
Operating bases
Focus cities
Alliance Star Alliance (future member)[1]
Fleet size 21
Destinations 31
Company slogan "Simply Priceless"
Parent company Air India Charters Limited
Headquarters Kochi, India
Key people Rohit Nandan, CMD

Air India Express is a low-cost airline subsidiary of Air India, headquartered in Kochi, operating mainly from Indian state of Kerala.[2] It operates services mainly to the Middle East and Southeast Asia. The airline belongs to Air India Charters Limited, a whole owned subsidiary of Air India Limited, which was formed in order to facilitate the seamless merger of Air India and Indian. Today Air India Express operates nearly 100 flights per week, mainly from southern states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala in India.


The airline was established in May 2004, after a long demand from Malayalee expatriate communities living in Middle East, seeking for a low cost budget airline.[citation needed] The airline started operations on 29 April 2005 with a flight from Thiruvananthapuram to Abu Dhabi. Delivery of the first aircraft for Air India Express took place on 22 February 2005 when a new production Boeing 737-86Q (leased from Boullioun Aviation Services) was handed over.

Corporate affairs[edit]

The airline has its head office in the Air India Building in Nariman Point, Mumbai.[3] In December 2012 the Air India director board ratified the proposal to move the head office to Kochi, effective 1 January 2013.[4] K.C. Venugopal, the Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation, said that the move would occur in phases, beginning with the opening of the Kochi office on 1 January (New Year's Day).[5] The airline's engineering centre was to move to Thiruvananthapuram.[2]

The airline's engineering centre has already moved to Thiruvananthapuram.The Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) facility of Air India Charters Limited (AICL) at Trivandrum International Airport has been given permission to carry out the crucial ‘C’ checks of their Boeing 737-800 fleet. With this, Trivandrum will be one of the 3 cities in the country where ‘C’ checks can be performed.‘C’ checks for a plane is carried out every 3,000 flights or in 15months and engineers will calibrate flight control, repair components and test major internal systems. They will also conduct minor structural inspections, rigging tests and post-check flights. Earlier the MRO facility in Trivandrum was handling 2 aircraft at a time and phase-checks of 3 aircraft a week.The Rs.110-crore MRO facility spread across 6.07 hectares was commissioned on December 16, 2011. The facility is state-of-the-art with 5,000SF of workshop, 10,000SF apron, electrically operated and vertically moving hangar door system, warehouse and office space. Initially, the MRO will handle engineering requirements of the aircraft in the fleet of Air India Express and later Airbus A-320.



The Air-India Express fleet includes the following aircraft (as of Feb 2014):

Air-India Express Fleet[6]
Aircraft In Service Passengers
Boeing 737-800 19 189 4 aircraft sold and leased back
Total 19

As of Feb 2014 the average age of the Air-India Express Fleet is 6.3 years

Inflight service[edit]

AIX's complimentary snack box.

Despite being a low cost carrier, Air India Express offers a complimentary pre-set snack box or light meal to its passengers with veg and non veg options. Limited entertainment facilities are available for passengers.[6]

Accidents & Incidents[edit]

  • On 25 May 2010, an Air India Express Boeing 737-800 flying from Dubai to Pune, India experienced a sudden 7,000 foot drop when the co-pilot bumped the control column while adjusting his seat. The captain, who was outside of the cockpit at the time of the incident, returned to the cockpit and recovered the 737 from its dive.[12][13][14]
  • On 26 Jan 2012, an Air India Express Boeing 737-800 flying from Changi Airport, Singapore to Trichy, started the take off roll with proper ATC clearance but managed to abort take off.

Tail Art[edit]

Each Air-India Express aircraft features a different tail design that reflects a facet of Indian culture, history and tradition.

Air India Express Boeing 737-800 at Mangalore International Airport
Air-India Express liveries [15]
Registration Left Tail Photo Right Tail Photo
1 VT-AXA[A] Thrissur Pooram elephant Pushkar Fair camel
2 VT-AXB[A] Rangoli Air India Express VT-AXB left MRD.jpg Indian Kite
3 VT-AXC[A] Sitar Tabla
4 VT-AXD Nilavilakku (Oil lamp) Diya (Oil lamp)

Air India Express.jpg

5 VT-AXE Kathakali dancer Bharatanatyam dancer
6 VT-AXF Konark Sun Temple Taj Mahal
7 VT-AXG Indian jewellery Indian Saree
8 VT-AXH India Gate Gateway of India
9 VT-AXI Indian art Indian art Air India Express VT-AXI right MRD.jpg
10 VT-AXJ Red Fort Red Fort
11 VT-AXM Mehrangarh Fort Air India Express VT-AXM left MRD.jpg Mysore Palace Air India Express VT-AXM right MRD.jpg
12 VT-AXN Hawa Mahal Air India Express VT-AXN left Karakas.jpg Ujjayanta Palace
13 VT-AXP Hamsa Damayanthi [16] Lady Playing Swarbat [17]
14 VT-AXQ Qutub Minar Jantar Mantar [18]
15 VT-AXR Snake Boat Race Kalaripayattu Air India Express trz airport.jpg
16 VT-AXT Indian Peacock Painted Stork Air India Express VT-AXT right MRD.jpg
17 VT-AXU Bihu Air India Express VT-AXU.jpg Garba Air India Express VT-AXU right MRD.jpg
18 VT-AXV[B] Victoria Memorial Konark Sun Temple
19 VT-AXW Sanchi Stupa Charminar
20 VT-AXX Beach Himalayas
21 VT-AXZ Dal Lake Thar Desert Air India Express VT-AXZ right MRD.jpg
22 VT-AYA Ellora elephant statue Ajanta cave painting
23 VT-AYB White tiger Chital
24 VT-AYC Naga Woollen Shawl Pataola Saree
25 VT-AYD Nagaland Folk Dance Manipuri Dance
  • ^ Have been returned to Lessors.
  • ^ Has been destroyed in accident.[C]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b "Kochi to be Air India Express headquarters." Rediff. 31 December 2010. Retrieved on 5 February 2013.
  3. ^ "Contact Us." Air India Express. Retrieved on 5 February 2013. "Head office address is: Air India Express Air - India Building, Nariman Point, Mumbai - 400 021, India."
  4. ^ Ramavarman, T. "Shifting of Air India Express headquarters to Kochi gets nod." Times of India. 14 December 2012. Retrieved on 5 February 2013.
  5. ^ Staff Reporter. "Air India Express route scheduling from city soon." The Hindu. 7 January 2013. Retrieved on 5 February 2013.
  6. ^ a b About AIX
  7. ^ "Jet crash kills 158 in India; 8 survive". 2010-05-23. 
  8. ^ "Indian official: 158 dead in Air India plane crash in Mangalore". Wire Update/BNO News. 2010-05-22. 
  9. ^ "Air India flight from Dubai crashes in India". MSNBC. 2010-05-21. 
  10. ^ "Casualties feared in Air India crash". CNN. 22 May 2010. Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  11. ^ "India plane crash in Mangalore leaves nearly 160 dead". BBC News. 2010-05-22. Retrieved 2010-05-22. 
  12. ^ "Report: Co-pilot moved seat, sent jetliner plummeting". CNN. 2010-11-30. 
  13. ^ "Report Cites 'Panicked' Co-Pilot in Air India Jetliner Dive". The Wall Street Journal. 2010-11-28. 
  14. ^ "'Panicky pilot' caused Indian passenger jet plunge". AFP. 2010-11-29. 
  15. ^ Flickr - Rick Schlamp
  16. ^ Schlamp, Rick. (2007-02-07) Air-India Express VT-AXP "Hamsa Damayanthi" | Flickr - Photo Sharing!. Flickr. Retrieved on 2010-08-12.
  17. ^ [1] by Raja Ravi Varma
  18. ^ Photo Search Results |

External links[edit]